28/6/2018 Today’s Update: Parashat Balak

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the sorcerer knows how to weaken our defenses

render the military helpless against sticks ‘n stones

unleash the curse, the secret weapon that already killed 24K of our best and brightest warriors and leaders

ha!  the best camouflaged strike against our entire nation

treads light ‘n silent

but they won’t defend themselves anyway – in the know, willingly

even if you warn them of the most lethal warfare they won’t listen

of course it’s not what they want to hear

how dare moi’s ego be insulted, assaulted, held on trial

truth suppressed, repressed, psycho-babble-devouring defenses

truth too stark and bitter against what I wanna do

can you have them pucker up for the camera

maybe lower the neckline for a great shot

show them just how sexy we are, rephrase modest prudish and stuffy

get them to let it out, let it down, let down our defenses

short-shorts and a dunce cap to let it all hang out, babe, and don’t bore me with priggish old-fashioned words like licentiousness or tell me there’s a straight ‘n narrow, right and wrong

fly the rainbow and kites this is progressive modernity

it’s in how you market it, phrase it, twist it

let the fake-news news-flash persuade you that all you need to know is that the king’s daughter Cosby is hot though on a back page tell of today’s same name rape charges

explain that this is freedom – that they’ll believe, they’ll accept

who will listen to what our Sages revealed that Bil’am the sorcerer revealed his top secret weapon: The God of Israel hates licentiousness (Tractate Sanhedrin 106a)

So, hey!  The new winning sexy – is modest!

Messilat Yesharim – The Track of the Upright

 

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(by the Ramchal, Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzato)

 

The title of the Ramchal’s book is taken from Mishley, Proverbs 16: 17 –

‘Track of Upright, leave evil protects one’s soul, forms one’s path.’

This book summarizes the Components of the complete Service of Hashem, as –

1.Awe, 2.Going in His Ways (Integrity of Perfecting Virtues), 3.Love of Hashem and Gratifying Him, 4.Wholeness of Heart, that the service of Hashem is with purity of intention, and 5.Keeping all the mitzvoth, commandments, being the means of the Service.

The root of wholeness of service – Authentic Piety – is that it should be clear and verified to a person what one’s duty is in the world, and why one needs to focus and direct everything one strives for one’s entire life.  The means to attaining our purpose are the commandments, the mitzvoth; and the place we can do them is only in this world – i.e. this world enables us to do them.  The basis of the Track is that verse in Dvarim, Deuteronomy 10: 12 –

And now, Israel, what does Hashem your God ask of you but to [have] awe of Hashem your God, to walk in all of His ways, and to [have] love of Him and to serve Hashem your God with all of your heart ad all of your soul.

And, the actual path, the ‘Terms of Service’ being the Track, is comprised of twelve steps or levels:

Torah leads to Carefulness (the mitzvoth of omission, or negative commandments), which leads to Agility (the action mitzvoth, or positive commandments), then Cleanness, Abstinence, Purity (of heart and thought), Piety, Humility, Sin-Fearingness, Holiness, the Holy Spirit (above natural law), and Resurrection of the Dead (like Eliyahu and Elisha the Prophets).

Actions of the Crown

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Man is suitable to [act] in likeness of his Maker,

and then he will be [included] in the secret of the higher form, tzelem [image] and character.

Whereas if he is similar in his body but not in actions, then he disappoints the likeness…

Therefore it is right to [act] in likeness to the actions of the Keter (Crown),

which are the 13 Virtues of Higher Compassion as hinted in the secret of the verses (Micha 7: 18-20)…

(The opening of the Ramak’s (Rabbi Moshe Cordova) Tomer Devorah, Deborah’s Palm)